For all of his successes against Chelsea as a player, Vieira knew the size of the task that he was facing at Stamford Bridge during the opening weekend of the season, and he was forced to witness his side be overwhelmed by a dominant Blues outfit last week.
Marcos Alonso’s stunning free kick began the rout before Christian Pulisic and Trevoh Chalobah – soon overcome by emotion – both found the back of the net against the Eagles, whose busy summer of spending did not pay dividends at Stamford Bridge.
However, with Michael Olise injured and Conor Gallagher ineligible, Marc Guehi was the only summer arrival to feature from the first whistle against Thomas Tuchel’s side, but an early wave of pre-season optimism may now have subsided for Palace.
Following last week’s defeat, Vieira was quick to announce his desire to bring more players in before the transfer window closes, but for now, the Arsenal Invincible must aim to avoid steering Palace to their fourth Premier League defeat in a row during his first Selhurst Park fixture.
The visit of Brentford may look kind on paper, but Palace have never demonstrated a great affinity for London derbies – winless in nine and losing their last four such matches – while their opponents just came up trumps in a dream capital derby on the opening day.
As lacklustre as Arsenal were, take nothing away from Brentford’s fired-up and remarkable showing against their London rivals, as the Bees’ return to the top flight after a 74-year absence started in the perfect manner with a 2-0 success in front of a raucous crowd.
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The far better team over the course of 90 minutes, Frank’s side scored their first-ever Premier League goal after 22 minutes as Sergi Canos rifled home an effort which beat Bernd Leno at his near post, and Christian Norgaard proceeded to bully his way through the Arsenal defence to head home and see out a dominant win.
The Gunners may have lost Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette to illness on the morning of the game, but Frank’s side did not rest on their laurels as heart-warming scenes followed after the final whistle at the Brentford Community Stadium.
However, the Bees share Palace’s disdain for London derbies, as the visitors have claimed just two wins from their last 12 such matches ahead of their first ever away game in the Premier League, but the momentum is firmly on their side.